Sheffield gentleman's knife

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tongueriver
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Sheffield gentleman's knife

Post by tongueriver » Sun Jan 26, 2020 4:03 am

I bought this knife from a dealer in Argentina and I was all aflutter by the time I finally got it. 3 1/2 inches closed shadow-bolster equal-end ‘Senator’ pen knife. Four blades, 3 being different shapes of pen blades, and the fourth being a manicure blade with file surface on both sides. All blades have long nail pulls, half stops, swedged spines, file-worked spines, and are all tang-stamped STAND over T.RENSHAW (in an arch) over & SON over SHEFFIELD. All blades have good snap both opening and closing and very positive half stops. They butt up to their respective spring ends when opened in a square and flush perfect manner. All blades have a mirror or crocus polished finish and are near 100%. The brass liners are milled all 360° around the knife. The springs are file-worked in a manner matching the blade spines. There are thumb cutouts for all four nail pulls. It appears that the file cuts on the springs have been treated to gold leaf. The three pins are nickel silver. There is an elegant nickel silver shield, blank and presumably pinned. Covers are controversial; there has been some discussion amongst aficionados over this example as to whether they are celluloid or sea turtle (commonly called tortoise). This is undecided. There is a substantial pin crack on the mark side on the end hosting the manicure blade. There is a piece missing from the analogous pin on the pile side, on the end hosting the largest blade. This knife was probably carried to some degree but I see no evidence of sharpening or use. It has its own molded leather two-part slip case, like a little telescoping box. When opened we see a cartouche in gold leaf “THOS RENSHAW” in an arch, over & SON over SHEFFIELD in a reverse arch, all in an outlined oval. This little knife was absolute top-of-the-line Ladies’ or Gentlemen’s knife. Goins says 1859 to 1900 for this company.
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Greenman
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Re: Sheffield gentleman's knife

Post by Greenman » Sun Jan 26, 2020 6:35 am

It’s definitely a thing of beauty, tongueriver!
I love how perfectly all four blades nest in the blade cavity.
Great score! ::tu:: ::tu::
Josh

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galvanic1882
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Re: Sheffield gentleman's knife

Post by galvanic1882 » Sun Jan 26, 2020 12:17 pm

Great score on a really beautiful knife ::tu::

BWT
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Re: Sheffield gentleman's knife

Post by BWT » Sun Jan 26, 2020 12:27 pm

Great find Cal, beautiful knife ::tu:: ::tu::
Bill

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Doc B
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Re: Sheffield gentleman's knife

Post by Doc B » Sun Jan 26, 2020 12:28 pm

Cal, that's a work of art!!! ::tu:: ::tu:: ::tu::
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LongBlade
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Re: Sheffield gentleman's knife

Post by LongBlade » Sun Jan 26, 2020 1:07 pm

::woot:: - Gorgeous knife Cal ::tu:: ::tu:: ::tu:: ... That knife is a great example of "The Golden Age of Sheffield" - and a lovely knife all the way around!! Thanks for sharing the description in detail which is imo very much reminiscent of the old Sheffield knives, and in particular those considered Exhibition knives - file work, gold wash etc... My guess when enlarging the photos is that the covers are tortoise shell (I just can't see them putting celluloid on a knife such as this) - could be some gold foil underneath the tortoise (done on high end knives) but hard to tell. Tortoise will get cracks as you describe and I posted a similar Clements London knife once (file work, gold wash, tortoise etc) where the tortoise also has a hairline crack at a rear pin - so it happens. Tortoise also tends to have thinner covers in contrast to celluloid which seems to be the case here. Whatever you do don't stick a pin in this one :D ...

Congrats on a very very fine knife Cal ::tu:: ::handshake:: ...
____________________________________________________________________________
Lee

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btrwtr
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Re: Sheffield gentleman's knife

Post by btrwtr » Sun Jan 26, 2020 1:40 pm

Awesome knife!
If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.

Wayne

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jmh58
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Re: Sheffield gentleman's knife

Post by jmh58 » Sun Jan 26, 2020 1:55 pm

Very Nice Cal!!! ::nod::
John :D
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danno50
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Re: Sheffield gentleman's knife

Post by danno50 » Sun Jan 26, 2020 1:55 pm

Wow, Cal, that is a beauty! ::tu:: I agree with Lee and believe it is tortoise shell. In your second photo there appears to be visible layering.
Dan

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tongueriver
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Re: Sheffield gentleman's knife

Post by tongueriver » Sun Jan 26, 2020 3:21 pm

Thanks to all for the kind words!

kootenay joe
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Re: Sheffield gentleman's knife

Post by kootenay joe » Sun Jan 26, 2020 4:29 pm

A master piece of cutlery, zenith of the cutlers' art, one to preserve for all time.
The 4 blade Senator is my favorite of all patterns and was one of the most expensive patterns that a manufacturer made. Even the 'plain' vintage Sheffield examples have the tightest tolerances of all knives. And these were made with 'primitive' hand tools, like a bow drill to make the pin holes, no drill press.
Four blade Senators were also made in USA and Germany and these too are superb knives but the Sheffield ones are in a league of their own.
kj

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QTCut5
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Re: Sheffield gentleman's knife

Post by QTCut5 » Sun Jan 26, 2020 4:38 pm

Sweet, Sweet Beauty! I really like that shield, too. ::tu::
~Q~

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TPK
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Re: Sheffield gentleman's knife

Post by TPK » Sun Jan 26, 2020 4:46 pm

Very beautiful find! Congratulations! ::handshake:: :D
YF,
TOM :D

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Re: Sheffield gentleman's knife

Post by wiseguy » Sun Jan 26, 2020 6:07 pm

Very nice knife , i`d pocket that for show & tell all day long

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Re: Sheffield gentleman's knife

Post by rugmar » Sun Jan 26, 2020 6:56 pm

A very nice find indeed! Congratulations, that knife is a real beauty and looks to be in wonderful condition!

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